…yet this is what the world needs if we are to survive our present multiple crises. Rudolf Steiner showed 100 years ago what an important role the overcoming of capitalism must play if we are to have any hope of finding our way to a future for the earth and all its species.
The anthropopper nevertheless tries to be positive and optimistic whenever possible, despite everything there is to worry us. We are undergoing not only what has been called “the sixth great extinction” but also an intense transformation of our society and what we thought were our certainties; and all this is happening at a speed which leaves us both breathless and disorientated. It is, of course, capitalism and globalisation that are forcing the pace, facilitated as they are by information technology and the omnipresent internet. These forces have brought with them economic liberalisation, falling trade barriers and tariffs, and the all-consuming imperatives of global corporations. The effect of these changes and the emphasis on the individual has led to the gradual dissolution of some of the traditional glues that have held society together, such as trade unions, religious organisations, political parties and voluntary associations. Hand in hand with this we have developed a scepticism, even a contempt, towards authority and the establishment. Our cynicism has only been encouraged by the way in which giant international corporations have been able to ignore borders and national loyalties and play off one country against another. They are beyond the effective control of national governments and can move their capital and profits around to wherever labour costs and regulatory requirements are lowest. We can all see that politicians have lost the plot, and despite their continuing pretence that they can control events and improve the situation for ordinary voters, we no longer believe them.
Corporations can now go wherever labour is cheapest and they can drive down workers’ pay with pernicious new forms of employment, such as zero hours contracts, which reduce their costs and responsibilities. While corporate profits soar through such devices, by the same process the job security and spending power of workers decline. This is not just making the working classes poorer, it is also affecting a growing number of the middle classes, who are less able to buy the products and services which these corporations are selling – so this is not only leading to the economic stagnation we have started to see all around us, it is also the start of a process by which global capitalism has started to eat itself. As Francis Bacon observed so wisely, “Money is like muck – not good unless it be spread.”
Middle-aged men who had expected to be breadwinners no longer feel in control of their fate, so they vote against a rich elite and for someone like Donald Trump, who despite being a billionaire, makes noises as though he understands their plight. I’ve decided that the key to understanding Trump is not to listen to what he says, but to look carefully at what he does. In my last post, I noted how the victory speech he gave after Clinton had conceded was a sign of his duplicitous style, going against everything he had said about her in the lead-up to the election. Similarly, during the election campaign, Trump said he would “drain the swamp” of Washington insiders and lobbyists. Instead of draining the swamp, the appointment by Trump of several billionaires and Goldman Sachs bankers to his administration shows that, in the words of Senator Sherrod Brown of Ohio, he is bent on stocking it with alligators.
At the time of writing, Trump has appointed 12 multi-millionaires, billionaires, Goldman Sachs bankers etc. to his cabinet, presumably on the grounds that, as they have feathered their own nests so well, they may be able to look after the country’s interests too. Either you believe that Trump is appointing poachers who may turn into gamekeepers, or else all his anti-corporate rhetoric in the campaign was just a pack of lies. So in this extraordinary era of post-truth politics, let us remember to watch what Trump does and not be taken in by the words he says.
I said in my last post that this new era of politics, with Trump at its head, is likely to be ugly; and so it is proving. Looking at the appointments in more detail, some worrying trends emerge:
Steven Mnuchin, 53, a former Goldman Sachs banker with a net worth of $40 million, has been appointed Secretary of the Treasury, with a brief to cut corporate taxes.
Scott Pruitt, 48, who as Oklahoma’s Attorney General made his name by opposing climate change policies such as the Clean Power Act, has been appointed head of the Environmental Protection Agency. He is on record as saying that the EPA has too much power.
Andrew F. Pudzer, 66, an anti-abortion lawyer turned fast food magnate, has been appointed Secretary of Labour. His experience includes opposing the raising of the minimum wage at his two fast food chains.
Jeff Sessions, 69, with a net worth of $15 million, and who was rejected for a post as judge during the 1980s amid claims of racism, has been appointed as Attorney General. His brief is that there should be less focus on investigating the deaths of black people in police hands.
Mike Pompeo, 52, a lawyer and former soldier who is now a congressman who sits on the intelligence committee, has been appointed as director of the CIA. He believes in the effectiveness of torture and his brief includes a loosening of the rules on “enhanced interrogation” and drone strikes.
Trump’s attitude to the environment is of course a disaster and perhaps it is the impending ecological catastrophe that should worry us most of all. Species extinction is the clearest indicator of what’s happening to ecology, and is the factor that will precipitate its collapse unless we stop it. We are currently losing around 100 species per day. When species loss, soil erosion and climate change turn countries into deserts, as is happening, then the scale of recent migrations into Europe will be dwarfed by what is heading towards us. As the global population heads towards 10 billion, while at the same time, desertification and ecological collapse are reducing the earth’s ability to feed us, many millions of people are going to be on the move in coming decades, and there is also likely to be a drastic population crash. It’s now conceivable that humanity as a whole may not survive into the 22nd century.
Now one could be very pessimistic about all of this and much else, just as George Monbiot is in this article, but as I say, the anthropopper likes to look for the tiniest hints of a silver lining; and in my view it’s just possible that a Trump presidency might wipe out the complacency that would have accompanied a Clinton-led administration, and the belief that if only Hillary were in the White House, we’d be slowly moving in the right direction and everything will eventually get back to normal. Everything is not going to get back to normal. Ecological damage is accelerating, which means that we’re on the path to extinction; and the concentration of wealth in the hands of a smaller and smaller number of people takes away the ability of the rest of us to do anything about it. This would not have been changed in the slightest with Clinton as president or Britain voting to remain in the European Union. Could the sheer unfolding horror of the Trump presidency be part of the shock we need to realise that we’re looking at an existential crisis for the human race; and that business as usual, including the Democratic Party, the European Union and other corporate-controlled institutions, is never going to solve it?
It is impossible to get to grips with our current ecological crisis as long as we have an unfettered capitalist economy. The present day extinctions cannot be understood in isolation from a critique of capitalism, because the constant emphasis on growth, growth, growth is destroying ecology.
Economic growth always results in an increase in spending power and it is of course impossible to ring-fence this increase in spending power so that it’s not spent on material things. Therefore, economic growth has to stop, because it always produces material growth, and we’re already past the limits of the material human economy that can be sustained without damaging ecology. Our economic system is destroying our life support system, and as we can’t afford to lose our life support system, we have to replace our economic system or suffer the consequences. This is simple logic but as the title of this post indicates, for most people it is easier to imagine the end of the world than it is to imagine the end of capitalism.
As mentioned above, Rudolf Steiner stated these things 100 years ago. Since then, conditions – not only in big cities – have become much worse. An ever growing inner emptiness can be observed, especially among young people, many of whom, to my eye at least, seem to be aging prematurely. What future do they have, these young people of my daughter’s generation? Some of those I meet are talking of moving from the UK to Berlin, where they might stand some chance of buying their own home one day; they are in despair over Brexit, which seems likely to deprive them of the opportunity to live and work in other European countries; but the real source of the emptiness in their lives lies elsewhere.
In this Age of the Consciousness Soul, it appears to us human beings that we are no longer linked to the world in the same way that people were in earlier ages. This has been an essential preliminary condition for the achievement of our freedom and egohood but as Stewart C. Easton has pointed out in his Man and World in the Light of Anthroposophy, it has meant that our attitude to the world has become necessarily a cold one. It is our urgent task today to overcome this coldness, to change our cold, dead, materialistic thinking into the spirit-infused warmth of living thinking that connects us once again with the earth and all living things. The philosophical basis of this has been set out by Rudolf Steiner in his book, The Philosophy of Freedom, but in essence all that we humans need to overcome our present dilemmas is to have a loving heart and a sense of connection with all of life – and then to act on our knowing.
There is something about the capitalist system which drives out of people’s minds any sense that there are realities other than economic reality. Anything which is not based in economics is dismissed as airy-fairy or unreal. This has led to our present situation in which the human personality, together with the spiritual-soul nature of the human being, is separated from the economic process. We cannot expect this to change until capitalism is changed. Humankind does not willingly prepare for crises. It’s only on the brink that people find the will to change. Only at the precipice do we evolve. The only way I know of in which capitalism can be overcome in a healthy way is through what Rudolf Steiner calls the threefolding of the social organism. After the failure of his efforts to persuade politicians to introduce this at the end of the First World War, he was asked whether another opportunity to do so would occur. He replied that it would take 100 years before a new chance would arise. We are now approaching that point and I’ve no doubt that I shall have more to say about this in 2017.
87 responses to “It is easier to imagine the end of the world than the end of capitalism…”
I don’t think Steiner meant to “overcome“ capitalism, rather to reform it; there’s a difference.
Capitalism is largely concerned with the economic order of the threefold commonwealth, and yet, to capitalize means to make the best of all opportunities. Thus, Steiner outlined a plan involving the goal of making the three orders: economic, legal/rights. and spiritual-cultural, all equally capital.
Of course, in today’s world, the west rules the economic order, and this has grown in such a way as to surmount the legal/rights and spiritual-cultural spheres of the center, and east. So, the system is imbalanced.
The focus on Trump in this essay is easily an acknowledgement of this imbalance towards the west [America]. The economic order in Steiner’s equation of “threefolding”, somehow got the upper hand, and this was already quite apparent in WWI, when Steiner formulated his idea of equality in 1917.
The secret goes back to Francis Bacon’s wisdom to bring his “new atlantis” project across the pond in order to advent materialism in the New World, This began the capitalism being discussed here. It wants to rule the world with its overarching emphasis, and also kill as many species as possible, ref. “the sixth extinction”.
So, the Britain dilemma is what? You either take your own fate into your own hands, or admit that the USA rules. This is what Jeremy is admitting. I have offered remedies. Brexit is a remedy in itself.
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I interpret your comment to mean that you agree with me, Steve (smile). Anyway, whatever the merits of Jeremy’s essay, he was mistaken by the use of the word “overcome” capitalism. Perhaps he meant “overcome the abuses of capitalism”, which are many.
Well, Frank, you may be right; and perhaps “transform” would be a better word to use than “overcome”. Steiner, however, advocated more cooperatively organised forms of capitalism (what might today be called stakeholder capitalism) because conventional shareholder capitalism tends to absorb the State and human rights into the economic process and transform them into mere commodities – and to this extent I think his ideas “overcome” our notions of capitalism.
You know, Jeremy, I was involved in the last serious threefold society beginning of a movement in Germany during the cold war. And the motto was: communism no; capitalism no. The threefold society is the “third way”. But the Soviet Union collapsed and it and its satellite states were free to choose. They chose capitalism, which, despite its many shortcomings, includes personal freedom (although that may also be freedom to starve to death.) So when I hear “overcome” capitalism, or down with capitalism, I ask “What are you going to replace it with…in the economic sphere?” Socialism/communism is out, it’s already failed. So we’re stuck with capitalism, but a capitalism strongly reduced in power and injustice as specified by Steiner in the basic description almost 100 years ago. Anyway, it’s necessary to roll with the times.
Economic capitalism is the issue here. If equality of the threefold initiative: economic order, legal-juridicial order, and spiritual-cultural order existed across the world, then full “capitalization” would exist across all three spectrums. Optimum value would yield worldwide, which is what Steiner had in mind.
Yet, what we have today is the rather over-arching rule of the westernmost USA’s version of “economic order” as constituting the dominating ‘order’ amongst the other three. Thus, rather than the real equality envisioned by Steiner for a harmonious and tripartite division of labor across three spheres of necessary human habitation for true worldly success, we have the west as the ruling power over the three European regions: west, central, and east. And that encompasses the Trump effect today, i.e., will he truly bring the world together for the whole, and not just “make america great again”?
Rudolf Steiner dealt very seriously with his idea of a Threefold Commonwealth beginning in 1917, when the USA suddenly decided to enter WWI on the side of the Allies. Thus, while this intrusion was a deeply disturbing effect, it also precipitated the formulation of an idea and subsequent doctrine that was designed to ensure that the “great war”, i.e., WWI, would, in fact, be the “war to end all wars”.
This was Rudolf Steiner’s resolve with the forming of the Threefolding of Society, and its social organism. It was seen as a worldwide initiative, and imperative for securing the cessation of war. President Wilson had run a campaign for re-election on the platform of : “He Kept Us Out of the War”, and yet, just days after being re-elected, Wilson was seeking entry into the war.
Once this was approved by Congress, and seen as an inevitability, Steiner went to work on his threefolding proposal. You see, he knew about Wilson’s background of arabism, some ten years before the revelations in KR, v. I.
So, Steiner pushed the three-folding initiative rather assertively for three years, until 1920, and then dropped it as a failure that would not be accepted because enlightened leaders did not exist. This image, and corresponding lecture, is likely the best representation of his frustration with it all.
“Oh what a tangled web we weave when we practice to deceive”. RS drew it out, even.
For Steiner (1919) the abstract spiritual life comes from the East in the form of ideology and lies. Protection might come from art:
“The spiritual has flowed into our life, but this has now become utterly abstract, a life of mere ideas. It has become what the socialistically-orientated groups latterly call an ideology, that is, a sum of thoughts that are only thoughts. That is what our spiritual life has really become. Under its influence the social chaos of our time has developed, because the spiritual life that is so diluted and abstract has lost all impulsive force. We have no choice but to place it again on its own foundation, for only so can it thrive. …
If the world continues in the course it has been taking under the influence of the degenerating spiritual life derived from the Orient, then this spiritual life, although at one end it was the most sublime truth, will at the other rush into the most fearful lies. Nietzsche was impelled to describe how even the Greeks had to guard themselves from the lies of life through their art. And in reality art is the divine child which keeps men from being swallowed up in lies.”
I am desperately trying to find shafts of optimism in the veil of gloom. There is — must be (50 million Michaelic souls in the USA alone — a proportion of every population very aware of this apocalyptic future and prepared to act. What do we do about the majority drifting forwards into a post-truth nightmare?
Jeremy, yes, Jeremy has written a very baleful essay in which capitalism is the ruling entity. It is, and no one with a head worthy of being sand-free would even remotely doubt it. Your estimate of Michaelic souls in the USA is an encouraging sign. Personally, as I live in the USA, I doubt it, although we do live for freedom of expression, and “live and let live”. We also see the narrow margin of economic-order emphasis, and so many of us live in marginalized conditions in which the so-called “bacon logic” rules. Thus, it is about possession, bills and debt ratio, and how to make a moral sense of it all.
To be a real Michaelic soul today is to be able to say:
Not I, but Christ, and Michael, in Me.
Paul realized the first part, two thousand years ago, and now it is possible to realize the second part, thanks to the spiritual science of Rudolf Steiner. Also,
Michael’s insistent, but unobtrusive voice in me, i.e, those who are aware if it. I know there are some, but I doubt 50 million in of all places, the USA. America loves and believes in freedom, but it is also one that wants it for the rest of the world. It truly does, and that is important.
So, in the 21st century the individual human middle is attacked from two sides, by materialism/capitalism and by intellectualism/post-truth marxism. Is the omnipresent Internet responsible for a process in which we are being shaped as a new species of intelligent animals?
Jeremy Smith wrote:
“In this Age of the Consciousness Soul, it appears to us human beings that we are no longer linked to the world in the same way that people were in earlier ages. This has been an essential preliminary condition for the achievement of our freedom and egohood, but as Stewart C. Easton has pointed out in his Man and World in the Light of Anthroposophy, it has meant that our attitude to the world has become necessarily a cold one. It is our urgent task today to overcome this coldness, to change our cold, dead, materialistic thinking into the spirit-infused warmth of living thinking that connects us once again with the earth and all living things. The philosophical basis of this has been set out by Rudolf Steiner in his book, The Philosophy of Freedom, but in essence all that we humans need to overcome our present dilemmas is to have a loving heart and a sense of connection with all of life – and then to act on our knowing.”
Steiner speaks about the importance of Fire and Enthusiasm as a conscious-soul initiative here:
“Think of a person whose soul is fired with enthusiasm for a high moral ideal, for the ideal of generosity, of freedom, of goodness, of love, or whatever it may be. He may also feel enthusiasm for examples of the practical expression of these ideals. But nobody can conceive that the enthusiasm which fires the soul penetrates into the bones and muscles as described by modern physiology or anatomy. If you really take counsel with yourself, however, you will find it quite possible to conceive that when one has enthusiasm for a high moral ideal, this enthusiasm has an effect upon the warmth organism. — There, you see, we have come from the realm of soul into the physical!
Taking this as an example, we may say: Moral ideals come to expression in an enhancement of warmth in the warmth-organism. Not only is man warmed in soul through what he experiences in the way of moral ideals, but he becomes organically warmer as well — though this is not so easy to prove with physical instruments. Moral ideals, then, have a stimulating, invigorating effect upon the warmth-organism.
You must think of this as a real and concrete happening: enthusiasm for a moral ideal — stimulation of the warmth-organism. There is more vigorous activity in the warmth-organism when the soul is fired by a moral ideal.”
GA202, 18 December 1920
Steiner was much too realistic to assume or claim that the threefold society would end war.
Yes, I realize that Steiner knew the so-called “European Karma” was too big for just one war, even if it was touted as “the war to end all wars”. That only justified stringing it out for four grueling years. Yet, early in the war, in 1915, he had some words to say that would only grow into a practical vision for peace and harmony in the world. Threefolding’s initiative grew out of these thoughtful words; words of responsibility.
More corroboration for the above:
“It was probably known to most of you that before the first year of the war was over, I had a small book published, Gedanken waehrend der Zeit des Krieges (Thoughts During the Time of War). [ Translator’s Note A ] It sold out rather quickly. If one would have considered the matter from the viewpoint from which, unfortunately, things are still considered today, despite the fact that the distress has become so great, it would have been a matter of course to publish a new edition. I opposed the printing of a new edition for the simple reason that the pamphlet had not fulfilled its task. This pamphlet — you can get hold of it again insofar as it is still available — was a question addressed to the German nation. It was not intended to be received in such a way as to lead one to assume the same tone which a great many members of the Central European countries had adopted during the war, and which is common today where surreptitious, poisonous defamations are leveled against anthroposophy. Nothing at all materialized of the expectation that I had concerning this pamphlet, the understanding that I had expected. A new edition would have been meaningful only if my expectation had been realized. So, it did not appear, but disappeared from public life, and in my opinion had to disappear. The proof of the lack of understanding given by this fact had to be taken very, very seriously. This was misunderstood in the same way many other utterances have been thoroughly misunderstood, utterances that were meant to elevate and ignite people’s spirit in order to bring about what should have been made to prevail directly in Central Europe, namely, a re-enlivening of the spiritual life that had been manifest around the turn of the eighteenth century. Spiritual science is basically the revitalization of this spiritual life in the form it must take in modern humanity.”
“Now at a certain point of the third phase during the war, I wrote the booklet Thoughts in Time of War. [ Note 4 ] This particular work elicited inner opposition which was especially noticeable. People told me that they thought anthroposophy never intervened in politics, as if that booklet involved itself with politics! And there was more of the same. Something had affected them which should not grow on the ground of anthroposophy although it sprouts in quite different soil. There were quite a few such objections to Thoughts in Time of War, but I am about to say something terribly arrogant, but true nevertheless; no one ever acknowledged that the whole thing was not really comprehensible to them at the time but if they waited until 1935 they might perhaps understand why that booklet was written.
And this is only one example among many which demonstrates clearly the strong intervention of something whose almost exclusive purpose was to undermine the freedom and self-determination within the Anthroposophical Society which we take for granted. It should have been self-evident that the writing of this publication was my business alone. Instead, an opinion began to form: If he wants to be the one with whom we build the Anthroposophical Society, then he is allowed to write only the things we approve of.
These things have to be stated in a direct manner, otherwise they will not be understood. They are symptomatic of a mood which arose in the Society and which ran counter to the conditions governing the existence of the anthroposophical movement!
But what has to play a particularly significant role in this third phase is the awareness of having created a Society which has taken the first steps along a road which a large part of mankind will later follow. Consider carefully that a relatively small society is set up which has taken upon itself the task of doing something which a large part of mankind is eventually supposed to follow.”
1935 is when the tumult of inner opposition occurred, and the so-called “purge” had the effect of banning the English and Dutch members. Was Steiner prescient on this back in 1923?
An interesting question is why Rudolf Steiner brought that particular group of individuals together in 1924 to form the first Vorstand, or Executive Committee. Marie Steiner, Albert Steffen, Elisabeth Vreede, Ita Wegman and Guenther Wachsmuth formed, in Steiner’s words, an ‘esoteric’ organ of the General Anthroposophical Society, whose purpose was to make the various parts of the anthroposophical movement into the world Society it ought to be. Steiner worked with these five individuals for nine months before his last illness. The relationships between these five were extremely complex and 11 years later, Elisabeth Vreede wrote about this: “Unfortunately it would be truer to say that there were differences in this Vorstand from the first moment onwards, which later led to the disastrous developments that occurred. These differences, that later became more and more apparent, made the short period of Dr Steiner’s activity within the Vorstand a basically sad and painful one, despite the wonderful lectures and so forth.” It’s difficult to believe that Steiner foresaw what would happen and still went ahead with this particular grouping – although I do believe that he foresaw what would happen with the first Goetheanum but still went ahead with it – so perhaps he saw it all as a matter of the necessities of karma working itself out.
To Steiner there is a difference between world events and actions of a free human:
“We see deeper into world events, not only in the past, but also certain events that flowed out of necessity from the world order rather than from the actions of free human. In that situation we can see, prophetically into the future, into the ordering of time itself.” GA0220/19230107
‘Thoughts in Time of War’ (1915) was based upon ‘a plain modern historical consideration’, not on any occult knowledge (Steiner in: GA 185a (1918)).
What about strengthening the Legal/Rights part of the threefold order with ideas like George Monbiot’s Commons?
What does it mean „capitalism“? I m not a scientist to give a definition, but I want to come back to some fundamentals. What s the purpose of the economy? Making profit, that s what Wall Street says and make more profit with the profit and so on. In the end: making money with money. Create jobs and thus provide a living for the employees and workers, that s what the trade unions and socialists say. No, these are „side effects“ if you like, the prime and foremost purpose of the economic life is providing, producing good, if not excellent goods and services. Then a company can be successful (and even google and microsoft started in this spirit, I assume).
Rudolf Steiner certainly d i d n o t want to reform capitalism! He would have greeted a more humane form of it, of course. But he vehemently rejected the idea of Darwinism in the economic sphere, survival of the fittest, naked egoism as the motivating force which was Adam Smith s credo. On the contrary: not working for your own interest, needs, profit; see the main economic law (soziales Hauptgesetz, GA 34). There is no room for Wall Street with Rudolf Steiner! Yes, of course you can claim, that is a dream, unrealistic, utopian. It would need a change of mind, mentality with mankind which is not possible, of course you can say so; but that is what Rudolf Steiner intended.
I only saw capitalism in the USA from the outside: In 1998 I visited a friend in SF. He had been a design professor at the well-known Folkwang University of Arts in Germany and at that time worked for a company designing and selling highest quality kitchens. He told me: Sorry, I cant take you to the airport tomorrow morning, I ve got to work. Then he got a phone call and after hanging up again he said: I ve just been fired, I have to collect my private belongings in the course of the day tomorrow, so I can bring you to the airport before. On my first visit to the USA in 1976 I was surprised that people were so friendly, in every shop, cafe, restaurant, all smiling friendly persons. At that time this was not the exception but certainly not the rule over here in Europe. Well, my enthusiasm dwindled when I realized that this was not a genuine friendliness, it didnt come from the soul but that it was a kind of jacket put on the soul. Today the same marketing tool is everywhere around here, too and I ve come to peace with it. But the encounter from person to person is further away than before. (I think even the doctors and nurses who carry out executions in Huntsville will do that with a professional smile.)
You can tame (or reform if you like that better) capitalism, attempts you can see in some European countries: no hire and fire, but using fake soul attitudes for higher profits anyway; high standard medical services for everybody but the rich getting richer and mightier and the tendency to turn basic, fundamental services like medical services, schools, universities, water etc into money making machines, not servicing entities what the fundamental meaning of the economy should be.
A short addendum to November 9, the day of the „Gang zu den Müttern“, the return to the „mothers“, which is an important day in history in many countries. Nov 9 is the day of the Mercury transits, when Mercury passes in front of the sun. This may vary a bit, 1 or 2 days before or after Nov 9, but it seems this is the day of Mercury transits.
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“A short addendum to November 9, the day of the „Gang zu den Müttern“, the return to the „mothers“, which is an important day in history in many countries. Nov 9 is the day of the Mercury transits, when Mercury passes in front of the sun. This may vary a bit, 1 or 2 days before or after Nov 9, but it seems this is the day of Mercury transits.”
The latest Mercury transit [occult Venus] occurred on May 9, 2016. The one that occurred on Nov 8-9 was back in 2006. The extraordinary “Brexit” vote occurred six weeks after the Mercury Transit of May 9, 2016. May Day is the day of Purification, owing to Saint Walpurgis, and when a Mercury transit occurs infrequently in May, it is because “the mothers” are on the rise.
Click to access Mercury2016_map.pdf
You are right, Steve. I should have been more precise: Mercury conjunctions happen twice a year, when the celestial mechanics make it possible and that is every year either in May or November, and I assumed the „central“ day in November is the 9th. Mercury transits are special forms of a conjunction so to speak.
Transits of Mercury occur at various intervals, with about 13 or 14 per century, and alternating between May or November. The last four transits occurred on November 15, 1999; May 7, 2003; November 8, 2006; and May 9, 2016. The next will occur on November 11, 2019, and then on November 13, 2032.
There was the question of whether RS could foresee the future. When he was asked, at the beginning of WWI, whether he knew which side would win the war he answered: Yes, if I wanted I could know, but that would preempt me from working for peace! (Sorry, I cant give you the source for this.)
Can we transfer this spiritual law to other aspects of life? Was this the reason why he never spoke of the future destiny of individuals, only of past incarnations?
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Steiner certainly had foresight into who was going to win the war in 1917, when the USA entered the fray on the side of the Allied Powers, 6 April 1917. Yet, I believe he also knew as early as 1913, when he described Woodrow Wilson’s odd idea about what meant freedom to a Russian audience, 5 June 1913, Helsinki, GA158. He warned of the imminent future therein.
Of early importance in the war was not who caused it, but who could have prevented it. Everyone, in their own fashion, served to cause the war to begin as various reactions. That is why it was an entirely contributory war, with all to blame. America’s entry would ensure that Germany would be blamed, and punished.
Who could have prevented the war was Russia, and England.
Steiner (like you and me) could not see into the future. He was completely wrong about WWI giving his backing to Moltke providing him spiritual assurance that destiny was on Germany’s side. When it became clear that Germany would not win Steiner back tracked.
There is no evidence of what Steiner advised Moltke, if they ever met in August 1914. Nor any backtracking; only commiseration for Wilson’s Fourteen Points. And the spiritual assurance was given to the members of the anthroposophical movement for strength and hope, and not destiny in Germany’s favor.
Here is where Steiner invoked the Time Spirit Michael, on 1 September 1914. Thus, this began the third phase of the anthroposophical movement.
“My friends, these are the days when every soul that has learned to look into the spiritual world needs to send imploring thoughts to the spirits it believes to be its guardians. These spirits may be asked to show us the right way into our age. And we shall know in our hearts what is right, shall be conscious of the right power in our souls, as we turn to the spirit that is to guide us through our incarnations on earth to what will be truly right for ourselves. You may ask how we are able to know that we are addressing the right spirit. We shall be able to be aware of this if we approach this spirit in a way that is in accord with the true Christ impulse.
For the spirit that guides us towards what is right-and we can be quite certain of this, dear friends-is allied with Christ, is in dialogue with Christ. This spirit is holding such a dialogue with the Christ in the spiritual world now-so that out of the purpose for which battles are fought and blood is shed the right thing may come for the good of mankind. It is in the spirit of Christ that we turn to the spirit who we hope will protect us. Then it will be the right spirit.
The nature of a spirit is, in the language of spiritual science, referred to as the ‘age’ of this spirit. The word is used in this way in the formula you will be hearing next. The term ‘age’ is more or less synonymous with the ‘nature’ of the spirit, for we have come to distinguish spirits on the basis of their age. We speak of Luciferic and Ahrimanic spirits in exactly this way, knowing that they are now at an age when it is not right for them to develop something that during the right epoch would be the proper thing for the evolving world. This is why we speak of the age of a spirit when we mean its essential nature. The formula is as follows:
Spirit of my space on earth,
Reveal the light of thine age
To the Christ-endowed soul,
That striving it may find
In harmony of spheres of peace
Thee ringing with praise and power
Of mind of man all given up to Christ
We must try and let the things that have been able to take root in our souls as we worked to attain to the spirit come to fruition, let them come to such fruition that we can hope to be able to face our trials. Let us try and affirm the belief that love is the soul of our efforts to reach the spirit, at a time when love is so much needed-Love and again Love.”
The Destinies of Individuals and of Nations, 1 September 1914, Berlin (Thoughts in Time of War)
To pick up on Jeremy’s question about the 5 individuals and whether RS foresaw what would happen later on and still went ahead with this particular grouping…..,
He would certainly have known that these powerful individualities were coming from different karmic backgrounds and it would be difficult for them to work together harmoniously, particularly without him being present to keep them on the right track and provide spiritual direction which they would been reluctant to question.
However, also, he must have seen the positive potential for Anthroposophy if they could learn to work together out of their higher nature and were able to overcome their personal ambitions and dislikes which is essential before any significant progress can be made in spiritual development.
It was clearly a risk he was aware of, but he must have decided that this was the best team and that if he encouraged them and they persevered with their 6 exercises and looking at themselves as strangers each night , and practising forgiveness and tolerance, then it might work out for the good.
So, once he had decided to throw in his lot with the Society, his only option to create a future that would enable Anthroposophy to flourish without him being at the helm, was to work with those he felt had the most potential and do what he could to make it work.
I wonder what lessons he learned in Kamaloka when all this was reviewed ?
Please read the fundamental chapter where the five were suggested to enthusiastic applause. They all had good and solid prior experience. As long as RS was alive, they measured up. Once he died, the course veered into Scylla and Charybdis due to the loss of their leader, Odysseus.
You asked in retrospect, “I wonder what lessons he [RS] learned in Kamaloka when all this was reviewed?”
I suspect he learned and determined that he wasn’t going to be reincarnating in the German Folk Soul anytime soon 😉
Indeed we do not know when and where Rudolf Steiner will be incarnated again. There are good reasons to believe that it will be in the west, in north America.
On the German folk soul: Rudolf Steiner confirmed Goethe s idea in his „Tales of German emigrants“, that the Germans will have the same destiny as the Gypsies and the Jews: they will be dispersed to all parts of the world. And as the Germans cannot hold their identity through the blood, like the Gypsies and the Jews, the „German“ influence or role will dissolve into the general human culture. (The Germans are the least able to keep their identity once they emigrated, much in contrast to say the Italians, Spanish, Irish.) And this end of Germany is not a matter of millenia but of (a few?) centuries.
So then, what will happen to the German folk soul? It will take up „another job“ then, as we learned from Rudolf Steiner about other folk souls.
By the way, Goethe s famous fairy tale The Green Snake and the Beautiful Lily is a small part of these Tales of German Emigrants.
It is not without significance, though, that the German Folk Soul has had a very important destiny that was carefully prepared by holding this culture behind and keeping it non-intellectual as simple and faithful peasants. Then, the 13th century arose, and with it, the birth of Christian Rosenkreutz, guided by the College of Twelve, and also the German Mystics of the Rhine, beginning with Meister Eckhart’s birth in 1265, when Thomas Aquinas was forty years of age.
Rudolf Steiner’s great achievement concerns fulfilling the mission of Christian Rosenkretuz in the 20th century, which was to make the previously kept secret knowledge a matter of public property. Thus, risk was involved, as well as resistance. It still is, as we make our way into the third millennium, which Steiner labeled: The Renewed Abraham Epoch.
“On the German folk soul: Rudolf Steiner confirmed Goethe s idea in his „Tales of German emigrants“, that the Germans will have the same destiny as the Gypsies and the Jews: they will be dispersed to all parts of the world. And as the Germans cannot hold their identity through the blood, like the Gypsies and the Jews, the „German“ influence or role will dissolve into the general human culture. (The Germans are the least able to keep their identity once they emigrated, much in contrast to say the Italians, Spanish, Irish.) And this end of Germany is not a matter of millenia but of (a few?) centuries.”
These comments appear all well and good, but it is when you speak about the Gypsies and the Jews as continuing to hold their identity through the blood that the opponents see this as anti-semitism. They harp on Steiner’s notion of the resistance of the Jews and Gypsies to assimilate within the various cultures, and choose to remain isolated instead. But, this is a fact of self-evident proportion. I used to live next door to a family of gypsies who advertised reading the crystal ball, and also sold used cars at discount. The same can be said of the Jews, although their clever methods are more refined. They rule the banks where mammon dwells.
But, here is the point: Steiner correctly acknowledged that the Jewish culture is regressive because it has chosen to not assimilate, which means it reincarnates generation after generation within its own blood-line because it thinks it is the chosen people, The Gypsies have this same predilection, and Steiner as a young boy was “creeped out” by these people.
Now, here is a scholarly analysis which combines Steiner’s so-called “assimilationist” notions about the Jews, and their resistance to evolve, and his favor with the Norwegian myths about Odin and Baldur, and how the mission of the folk souls has a decidedly Germanic/Teutonic/Norwegian slant, ref. GA121.
Today’s scholars see this as the epitome of the Aryan notion of supremacy, which Rudolf Steiner supposedly advocated, even though the facts during the war years [1914-1918] proves that he only wanted peace, harmony, and the solution to further strife through the three-folding initiative. He was very definitely linked to Michael in this third phase.
Comments please. – Steve
Click to access ebbestad-hansen.pdf
Following Zander, Martins and Staudenmaier, the introductory section of Ebbestad Hansen’s paper (2015) presents Steiner’s ‘modifications of general mankind’ as delineated racial types within a developmental hierarchy. In the modern genetic view such demarcated groups do not exist, their number is arbitrary.
In Steiner’s view the six racial groups with their stereotyped characteristics were more like (planetary) spheres of influence, which have modified the universal (sunlike) human form by Lamarckian epigenetics. Archaic humankind migrates, modifies and mixes. In addition, in a second postglacial migration the Indo-European cultures have developed. To Steiner, the universal sunlike culture here seems to be the disappeared, original Irish-Celtic culture, not a stereotyped Germanic-Scandinavian or Jewish one.
“Following Zander, Martins and Staudenmaier, the introductory section of Ebbestad Hansen’s paper (2015) presents Steiner’s ‘modifications of general mankind’ as delineated racial types within a developmental hierarchy. In the modern genetic view such demarcated groups do not exist, their number is arbitrary. In Steiner’s view the six racial groups with their stereotyped characteristics were more like (planetary) spheres of influence, which have modified the universal (sunlike) human form by Lamarckian epigenetics. Archaic humankind migrates, modifies and mixes. In addition, in a second postglacial migration the Indo-European cultures have developed. To Steiner, the universal sunlike culture here seems to be the disappeared, original Irish-Celtic culture, not a stereotyped Germanic-Scandinavian or Jewish one.”
This is a nice assessment, although it will remain largely not understood by today’s standards of logic. The phenomenon of racial stereotyping, and profiling, is a modern-day occurrence, which is a fact, and also proof that racial distinction is something which should be over and gone with, by Steiner’s indications, but still prevails in the most hideous ways among the world scene.
Just take the Jews and the Muslims in Palestine, as an example. Does this really have to happen? How about the racial stereotyping in America, which is my scene? Brutal, and why gun violence exists in such random acts.
The world is filled with the violence of race against race, but it is not because of Rudolf Steiner’s doctrine of evolutionary race formation in the fourth epoch. No, it is rather because of the workings of evil forces, which would have cultures regress instead, and remember their former tribal boundaries. This is the working of the Asuras in the Ego, much as Ahriman works in the Etheric Body, and Lucifer in the Astral Body.
Please remember the map of America in the 17th century. These folk had divided and sub-divided to the extent which meant extinction unless the European colonists appeared. They did, in order to save this last isolated remnant of Atlantean migration.
“Go west, young man, go west” – Horace Greeley
Staudenmaier (2014) almost completely omitted the dynamics (human migration and colonization) in the anthroposophical evolution model (see Ch.1 of his book). Leaving out a common origin of humankind, he presented Steiner’s stereotype model as a progressive stage model of human development (p.42-3).
Sixth great extinction
This is not really in the focus of public attention. Having found a word, a term for it is of great help.
Beside the pure numbers of extinction there is also a profound degeneration of the quality of the biosphere.
-In 1924! Rudolf Steiner spoke of the degenerating food quality, which made it difficult, for some impossible to walk a path of spiritual development; he especially talked of the dwindling light ether in food. He hinted at the „light root“, what is now known as light yam as a remedy for it. The degenerating food quality and its consequences were among others a reason for the agricultural course at Koberwitz.
-In the 70s there was the word, coming from Findhorn, Scotland, that a great number of elemental beings (if I remember correctly they spoke especially of the higher, greater elementary beings) had left or fled Scotland across the North Sea to Norway. The implication was that „the living conditions“ in Scotland were deteriorating (in the 70s!!) and they found a better environment in Norway.
-What then, in the 70s, sounded a bit like new age blabla is now better understood or I should say I understand better now. Higher, more complex elementary beings are on the retreat: I was told that in the last 10 or 20 years the elementals in Romania are retiring from more easily accessible lands to higher and higher regions in the Carpats and more secluded areas. The quality of the elementary landscape is deteriorating.
First the highest beings leave, have to leave. Much should and must be said about this and its consequences. Luckily there are a number of (also anthro) researchers who can study this and write and talk about it.
-There is farming that exploits and harms and poisons the biosphere and that is the case on perhaps 80 – 90 % of all agricultural land.
Then there are farming methods that dont poison but still exploit.
Then there are methods that give back to nature what they take. Permaculture?
And then there is only one method -as far as I know- that doesnt only give back what it takes but after a year there is more in quality and substance than before and this is the biodyn method.
Someone higher qualified than me can explain this more exactly.
-On the whole the situation is bleak. Rudolf Steiner was always positive, tried to focus and stress the positive sides, the chances and only rarely talked of the imminent dangers, but he did this only to encourage us. He talked of the need to form „cultural islands“ (Kulturinseln), where higher forms of biological and elementary life, social life, soul life and spiritual life would still be possible; an islands in an ocean of what?
-This is a very special time of the year: winter solistice, holy nights, we all know about it, from the books, from our own experience, everybody along his/her own place.
On New Year s Eve we are lifted above our blood ties to our people and to our soil (according to Rudolf Steiner) and the inhaleing inspiration turns to manifestation. Hopefully we ll find a way to take up the inspiration not only for us but for the starving world, hopefully we can escape the child murder of Herodes, the killing of the new born in us in the first days of January.
Sorry, I didnt want to be pathetic, but times are serious indeed.
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“This is a very special time of the year: winter solstice, holy nights, we all know about it, from the books, from our own experience, everybody along his/her own place. On New Year s Eve we are lifted above our blood ties to our people and to our soil (according to Rudolf Steiner) and the inhaling inspiration turns to manifestation. Hopefully we ll find a way to take up the inspiration not only for us but for the starving world….”
This year is very significant as it sees both the beginning of the Christian Holy Nights, as well as the beginning of the Jewish Winter festival of Hanukkah for eight days beginning on the evening of December 24th. This is a rare conjunction between these two festivals; one Jewish and the other Christian. I feel that it makes the contemplation all the more special. This is made especially so when we consider what Christ Himself actually experienced in the last winter of His sojourn on earth, in Jerusalem, and walking deep in thought about this festival of the Jews; the Feast of the Dedication.
As such, it continues for eight days of our twelve nights. As a contemplation, I would like to ask what these additional four days could mean in gaining a fuller realization of the extent of spiritual evolution. Christ seems deeply concerned about something during this festival event; and then He is confronted, as usual.
“This year is very significant as it sees both the beginning of the Christian Holy Nights, as well as the beginning of the Jewish Winter festival of Hanukkah for eight days beginning on the evening of December 24th. This is a rare conjunction between these two festivals; one Jewish and the other Christian. I feel that it makes the contemplation all the more special. This is made especially so when we consider what Christ Himself actually experienced in the last winter of His sojourn on earth, in Jerusalem, and walking deep in thought about this festival of the Jews; the Feast of the Dedication.
As such, it continues for eight days of our twelve nights. As a contemplation, I would like to ask what these additional four days could mean in gaining a fuller realization of the extent of spiritual evolution. Christ seems deeply concerned about something during this festival event; and then He is confronted, as usual.”
Steve, this is a special contemplation with the eight days celebration within the twelve nights and the four additional days.
Considering the four days –
Earth from ancient Saturn, ancient Sun and ancient Moon is in her fourth planetary incarnation and we are in the fourth day of Creation
Crowning this is the significance of the Four – the Quaternary
Eight days from the 25th December to the 1st January is eight days
and the additional four days takes us to the 6th January
The 25th December is the celebration of the birth of the Nathan Jesus (the Gospel of Luke)
The 6th January is the celebration of the birth of the Solomon Jesus (the Gospel of Matthew)
Thus, the two streams flow into one another –
The Nathan Jesus is the etheric body of Buddahood containing the mystery of Time
The Solomon Jesus is the astral body of Zarathustra containing the mystery of Space
The accumulation of these two streams in time and space which led to the Mystery of Golgotha could not have been made possible without the third stream which is the physical body of the Son of Man.
The physical body of the Son of Man was Hebrew
The etheric body of the Son of Man was the Buddha
The astral body of the Son of Man was Zarathustra
The three streams of divine Trinity is brought into equilibrium through the Christ and thus the Trinity becomes a Quaternary which is the mission of the Earth the planet of Love.
The celebration of the earthly birth of The Son of Man who is not crucified on the Cross but made whole through the Risen Body of Christ which is truly the Easter celebration of the Quaternary and the birth of the Son of Man into the Spiritual World.
Caryn, this is an intriguing assessment of the additional four days that comprise the Christian Twelve Days/Nights. It is one of those great meditations that we have known in the recent past on our forum. You wrote here something I seem to remember from an earlier comment concerning “the fourth day of creation”.
“Considering the four days –
Earth from ancient Saturn, ancient Sun and ancient Moon is in her fourth planetary incarnation and we are in the fourth day of Creation.”
How do you calculate the fourth day of creation? Is it from Genesis, or the fourth of the seven earth epochs, or the post-atlantean fourth? No, that would be the Greco-Roman epoch from 747 BC to 1413 AD. I think we are in the eighth day of creation, and the fifth epoch. Why? Because everything changed when we went from being the Fourth Hierarchy, and experienced the Fall into the Human Kingdom.
“How do you calculate the fourth day of creation?”
Mars and Mercury are placed between Moon and Jupiter
Caryn, hasn’t Steiner stated a bit ambiguously in 123/4(9/4/1910): “In my lectures on Luke, I told how the Buddha was present at the birth of Luke’s Jesus and how he united his etheric body (= Buddha’s nirmanakaya) with this Nathanic Jesus ….”?
‘But, this is a fact of self-evident proportion. I used to live next door to a family of gypsies who advertised reading the crystal ball, and also sold used cars at discount. The same can be said of the Jews, although their clever methods are more refined. They rule the banks where mammon dwells.’
I don’t understand what Steve means by ‘ …this is a fact of self-evident proportion.’
Amongst Jews there may be individual cases of refusal to assimilate but that refusal may be the decision of an individual and nothing to do with their racial origin. How would anyone know how such a decision arose in an individual’s soul? But antisemitism ASSUMES that such a decision has arisen because of the racial origin NOT because of the free choice of the individual.
A member of my family is of gypsy origin and she could not be further from the demeaning stereotype Steve presents here.
Anyone can offer anecdotes which confirm or undermine a particular judgement. But they are just that – anecdotes. Unfortunately the judgements they are intended to support in this case are slights on the moral worth of the individuals against whom they are leveled, gypsies and jews in this case.
Did Steiner ever actually say that ‘[he] was “creeped out” by these people…’? I can’t imagine Steiner ever using such a phrase. whereas Hitler, in Mein Kampf, does claim that as a child he was repulsed by the sight of traditionally dressed Jews.
Steve says of the Jews, ‘They rule the banks where mammon dwells.’
I find Steve’s contribution above to be antisemitic. When I read it I experience a feeling of constriction around my heart.
I am surprised that Jeremy allowed Steve’s contribution through.
Not only is it antisemitic, it is also total garbage – “their resistance to evolve” great stuff!
A late Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all
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Of course it comes across as antisemitic, and that is why the scholars take issue with Steiner’s race-culture theory when it comes to the Jews. Does assimilation really exist as an evolutionary imperative? Steiner obviously felt that the myth of the “wandering Jew” meant something related to non-acceptance of the Christ, and non-assimilation as the result. In other words, here is a culture doomed to reincarnate again and again within its own regressive tendencies. Remember, Caiaphas hatched the plot as recorded in the Gospel of John, late in chapter 11. This set the standard, which is still in existence today.
My only goal was to draw attention to a particular passage which could easily be construed by the critics as racist. But, since the overt outer opponents of anthroposophy have largely folded up [Yea], it obviously now becomes a matter of discussing this issue amongst ourselves.
“and as the Germans cannot hold their identity through the blood, like the Gypsies and the Jews….”
Simple statements hold much of importance in the analysis. It even brings back memories. Personally, I uphold both the Jews and the Gypsies in living exactly as they choose. But, there could be larger issues at work, as well.
If you would read what I wrote with full effect, you would find that the issue is one of assimilation of a culture, i.e., cultural amalgamation, vs. non-assimilation, or regressive evolution, which Steiner is charged with expounding with regard to the Jewish ethnicity. In other words, can a particular culture be so self-involved that it refuses to reincarnate in other ethnic domains? This is the issue here. Are the Jews evolving, or regressing generation after generation? Steiner sees this as the threat to the entire Jewish population if they remain “hidebound”, and refuse to admit and accept the fact that Christ incarnated two thousand years ago in the land known as Palestine.
Steiner defends the Jews enormously in this lecture, but also highlights the difficulties seen with continued resistance. This resistance is a self-evident fact, unless someone sees Christ-consciousness developing therein. The various Jewish festivals, such as Hanukkah, would indicate that no recognition of Christ is admitted and accepted by the present advocates of Judaism. Nonetheless, Steiner upholds the glorious Jewish heritage here, and in many other discourses:
Tom, it amazes me that you could say this:
“I find Steve’s contribution above to be antisemitic. When I read it I experience a feeling of constriction around my heart. I am surprised that Jeremy allowed Steve’s contribution through.”
Please don’t shoot the messenger. He loves all people of all cultures, and especially in his own domain of Tacoma, Washington. It is the veritable Galilee of the West. He mentioned the gypsies next door because they had a son who suffered from mental illness and had to be committed for treatment from time to time. He would reappear normal, and then go into a sad period that evinced the fact that he could not adapt to the stricture of an ahrimanic lifestyle. My mother welcomed him into her home when he was falling apart again. Silently, I was able to construe that he was of the old country, i.e., the turanians, and had remained behind in an advancing world of palm-readers, crystal-ball gazers, and used car lots. So, indeed, some remain behind on a personal level as a karmic bond.
I appreciate that Steve is motivated by good-will, but that does not change the fact that he makes statements , apparently following Steiner, which deny the self-determination of and negatively stereotype the individual. Racial characteristics traits cannot be demonstrated objectively to exist. Steve seems to have missed out on the developments in social thinking since Steiner’s time which demonstrate that ‘race’ is a social construct.
I would add that it can only be a figure of speech to write of a culture as a self-determining being, e,g., “..can a particular culture be so self-involved that it refuses to reincarnate in other ethnic domains?”. The fact that Steiner may have spoken like that only demonstrates to me that Steiner was not all-knowing and all-seeing.
There is no possible justification for repeating such negative stereotypes of Jewish people as ‘They rule the banks where mammon dwells.’
Steiner’s attitude and position concerning race was that soul development would bring the races together in cultural diversity. These words constitute the best defense that his stance was not antisemitic, but cosmopolitan:
“I have told you that the mission of the Jews in human history was to spread the belief in the One Godhead, and it will be clear to you that it was necessary for them, as a people, to be prepared for this. Therefore it came about that when the Jewish people originally came into existence, the several Folk-Spirits, each of whom worked individually in a particular people, all concerned themselves with the Jewish people. Thinking of the different peoples, we say: Indians — Indian Folk-Spirit; Egyptians — Egyptian Folk-Spirit; then Greek Folk-Spirit, Roman Folk-Spirit, and so on. Each Folk-Spirit had to do with a particular people. (Drawing on blackboard.) But if we take the Jewish people, then, in that corner of the Earth called Syria where the Jews had their home, the influences and will of all the Folk-Spirits operated in this one people.”
This strong and potent influence has in a certain respect made the Jews into a cosmopolitan people and accounts for the tenacity that has remained characteristic of them. No matter where they might be, they were always able to gather together and preserve Judaism, simply because they had everything within them.”
It is very remarkable how Judaism has everything within it. In Orders or Societies of Freemasons, Oddfellows and the like, in which there is no new spiritual knowledge but an antiquated kind of knowledge they themselves no longer understand, you will find in the very words of the rites, elements deriving from all kinds of different peoples: Egyptian rites and words, Assyrian and Babylonian words and signs — but especially elements from the Jewish Kabbala and so forth.
In this respect Judaism is truly cosmopolitan; it adapts itself to everything but also preserves its original impulse which is still alive within it.” The same is true of the Hebrew language in which there is great richness of content, both spiritual and physical. Every Hebrew word is always full of meaning. It was a peculiarity with the Jews to write only the consonants; later on, the vowels were indicated by means of signs. The vowels themselves were not written; everybody might pronounce them in his own way, so that one man said: J-e-h-o-v-a … another said: J-e-h-e-v-a … a third said: J-e-h-a-v-e … a fourth, J-o-h-a-v-e. — The vowel sounds were pronounced as they were felt. And that is why such a designation as the name “Jehova” which had been instituted by the priests in this particular form, was called the “unutterable Name” … because it was not permissible to make arbitrary use of the vowels.”
Characteristics of Judaism, GA353
Characteristics of Judaism (1923) comprises 30 pages in the original lecture (p.196-227).
It starts from the question: Have the Jews, as a people, fulfilled their mission in the evolution of humanity? Steiner affirmed this fulfilment, and defended a radical assimilatory stance on grounds of anthroposophy superseding the subconscious monotheism of Judaism and polytheism of other peoples. He explained antisemitism as a reaction to a religious tenacity, segregation and preservation within Jewish cosmopolitism and adaptability.
“The Jews worshipped the one God Jehovah and men were thereby saved from wholly losing their way in polytheism. A natural consequence has been that the Jews have always kept themselves distinct from other men and so too — as always happens in such a case — have in many respects evoked dislike and antipathy. The right attitude to take to-day is that in the times to come it will not be necessary to segregate any particular culture in order to prevent its dissipation — as the Jews have been doing for centuries — but that this practice must be superseded by spiritual knowledge. The relation between the single Godhead and the multiplicity of spiritual beings will then be intelligible to men and no one people need be under the sway of subconscious impulses.” Etc.
(compare Staudenmaier 2014, p.144, who ascribes a polygenist racial view to the anthroposophist Steiner (p.138), and skips the religious monotheism/polytheism theme: https://www.academia.edu/2306281/Rudolf_Steiner_and_the_Jewish_Question)
It is important to realize that atavistic clairvoyance is older than thinking, and has been retained out of the old-moon clairvoyance that passed over to earth when the mineral substance that forms its kingdom here on earth occurred in the last third of the Lemurian epoch. This event is also where we can discern a Moon Oracle.
At the midpoint of the Atlantean epoch, this imaginative-visionary clairvoyance, which had been the faculty of human perception since the passing over of the mineral substance, was deemed ready to be extirpated in order to begin to draw humankind down more densely into the earth, and wherein the faculty of thinking would begin to be developed as the proper faculty for earth evolution.
Thus, at every stage of the downward descent since the fall of Atlantis, this clairvoyant faculty was in the process of diminishing in favor of cultural migration and assimilation, wherein especially significant was the vast period of the Third Cultural epoch, consisting of:
Herein, at the fifth stage within this cultural epoch we first begin to see the concrete entry of a new faculty in the personage of Abraham of Ur, of the Chaldea region. And this fact is clarified most dramatically with the sacrifice of Issac as a test administered by Jahve to Abraham, father of this beloved son, born out of the miraculous.
Instead, just before slitting the throat of Issac as the blood sacrifice owing to the will of Jahve, and the obedience of Abraham, a Voice tells Abraham that a two-horned ram instead will be the sacrifice. And this is to symbolize the death of the old-moon clairvoyance once and for all. The faculty of thinking is to be developed, and originally the brain of Abraham and his cultural stream, the Hebrews, was a unitary and undivided brain.
Yet, other influences were passing down with the Hebrews during this third cultural epoch, and they sought at all times to retain the old-moon clairvoyance in its dwindling forms. And thus, it was retained to this very day.
Considering that the masonic stream of civilization predates the post-atlantean cultural epochs by many thousands of years, and can be traced to Cain, who slew his brother Abel, who was the first to be born out of true human procreation, we can always find a dedicated connection with this now atavistic clairvoyance with the masons.
One particularly important example of this is when Solomon, born out of the Kingly side of the House of David, and bestowed with the Heart of Wisdom, has a mason build his temple, i.e., Solomon’s Temple. Solomon gives authority to Hiram Abiff to build his Temple, and therefore masonic influences were placed into it. And that is how something happened that wasn’t supposed to happen.
And what was that? The forming of the so-called “Lament of the Jews”; the Bath-Kol, which effectively shut the door of wisdom to the gods. This is the way it was at the turning point of time, and why the real King of the Jews was not able to be recognized. This was because of Hiram Abiff, Master-Builder of the masons, who was sent to build Solomon’s Temple during the period of Solomon’s rule (974-937 BC)
And this is why Rudolf Steiner always gave lectures to the workmen who were building the first Goetheanum. It was to ensure that masonic influences would be kept out. He continued this effort even when the first was gone and the second needed to be envisioned.
Steve, I would say, you outline the southern Atlantean stream with the development of the abstract, personal intellect (Abel, Abraham, Salomon). The northern stream (Old Persians, Old Celts) is said to have developed the intellect in nature: Cain and Hiram (cf. GA 93, 113 and 325_02, and the recently translated lecture on human ‘races’ in GA0054/19051109).
In connection with the legend of Ahasuerus the concept ‘race’ seems to be depicted by Steiner (GA 104_04, 102_08) as ‘great epoch’ (root race: Atlantean, Post-Atlantean etc.) and not as the ‘Jewish race’ (Staudenmaier’s interpretation, 2014, p.141-2).
Here is what I am suggesting with this discourse. There is a very definite reason that Zarathustra invested his being into the 42 generations of Abraham. He obviously saw the potential for this so-called “progenitor of the human race as thinker”, i.e, Abraham; the earthly Manu. So, the Old Persian from the Northern Stream is none other than Zarathustra himself. Having chosen to incorporate into the physical hereditary bloodline of the Hebrews, he would incarnate at several points within this downward descent, as prophet, and philosopher, and then as the Solomon Jesus child, destined to sacrifice his physical incarnation at the twelfth year on behalf of the Nathan Jesus child.
When the Christ incarnated into the three sheaths of the Nathan Jesus at the Baptism of John, he became the Master Jesus, and participated in the gospel events in a very significant way. He was the eyewitness, which required a particular account that could have filled volumes beyond the earth’s ability to contain them. So, he chose to be concise, and select the best representative events. Of particular note, and found nowhere in the other three gospels, are the seven attesting miracles accounted in the Gospel of John.
These were the specific events that filled the so-called, “Cup” of Jesus with the Sun forces required to plant the physical body into the ground of the earth for its renewal. Only the writer of the Gospel of John knew this, and why he paid a special chapter to the raising of Lazarus as the seventh miracle.
Yet, Lazarus had died before he could be raised from the so-called “sickness not unto death”. He actually died as the forerunner of the Mystery of Golgotha. Thus, the seventh and final miracle became something more. It became a true resurrection from the dead, as Lazarus walked out from the tomb brushing the ashen dust off his face.
So, what’s the secret to this event?
“Yet, Lazarus had died before he could be raised from the so-called “sickness not unto death”. He actually died as the forerunner of the Mystery of Golgotha. Thus, the seventh and final miracle became something more. It became a true resurrection from the dead, as Lazarus walked out from the tomb brushing the ashen dust off his face.
So, what’s the secret to this event?”
“I am the voice of one calling in solitude”
(The Gospel of John)
I have always refused to have anything to do with forms of antiquated occultism, with any Brotherhoods or Communities of that kind in the domain of esotericism. And it was only under the guarantee of complete independence that I worked for a time in a certain connection with the Theosophical Society and its esoteric procedures, but never in the direction towards which it was heading. Already by the year 1907 everything really esoteric had completely vanished from the Theosophical Society, and later happenings are sufficiently well known to you. It has also happened that Occult Brotherhoods made proposals to me of one kind or another. A certain highly-respected Occult Brotherhood suggested to me that I should participate in the spreading of a kind of occultism calling itself ‘Rosicrucian’, but I left the proposal unanswered, although it came from a much-respected Occult Movement. I say this in order to show that we ourselves are following an independent path, suited to the needs of the present age, and that unhealthy elements are inevitably regarded by us as being undesirable in the extreme.
(The Occult Movement of the Nineteenth Century, 11 Oct 1915, Dornach)
Didn’t the two streams cross (113_07)? Both Hiram-Lazarus and Zarathustra belonged to the northern Lukan (Kain) stream. But until the age of twelve Zarathustra incarnated in the southern Matthean (Abel) stream (123_05).
The list of „accusations“ against Rudolf Steiner is long and bizarre indeed: He is or was– a Jesuit -educated by Jesuits -a Jew -a friend of Jews – an antisemit -a racist -a pan german chauvinist -guilty of high treason against Germany -co-responsible for the defeat of Germany in WWI -Internationalist, Cosmopolit -he puts the individual above the people – a liar -a plagiator -a thief -a gnostic -not a christian -drug addict -he pratised sexual magic -a pedophil -anthroposophy as an ideology of German imperialism Did I forget another sin?
Have the gender activists not yet scrutinized him? What about a male sexist? Sure they will find 1 suspicious line with no interest at all in the content or spirit of the other 100 000 lines of text.
Of course there is a mental, cultural, social environment for each of these accusations. So for me personally it is interesting to see, when and where these accusations appear and who brings them forth. For me it is something like: Tell me about your accusation against Rudolf Steiner and I tell you who you are, what kind of person you are. Wes Geistes Kind du bist. Will there be future accusations which we cannot imagine today?
“Will there be future accusations which we cannot imagine today?” Yes. there will, and they have already occurred.
Back in 1921, these were the charges compiled in the preface of a very important book about Steiner’s relation to Martin Luther:
“If, then, today a Great One bears within him the Living Power of the Christ,
and seeks to revivify our present civilization and our immediate future . . . what easier than to dub him a traitor to the German Spirit, a Hungarian Jew, an Indian Juggler, a Rabbi dabbling in Occultism, a Romish Jesuit, a Russian Bolshevist, a Bourgeois Capitalist?”
I addressed Steve twice but not using the exact same words. In essence I said, “There is no possible justification for repeating such negative stereotypes of Jewish people as ‘They rule the banks where mammon dwells.’ “.
I said that Steve’s remarks were antisemitic.
Nowhere did I use any demeaning language about Steiner such as the accusations you mention or the charges that Steve mentions.
I try not to use such language.
I did express doubt that Steiner would have expressed at least one of the thoughts that Steve attributes to him.
And, yes, I did write about cultures, ‘The fact that Steiner may have spoken like that only demonstrates to me that Steiner was not all-knowing and all-seeing.’ (Please note the use of the word ‘may’.)
But it is true that I am not one of those people who feels it is impossible to question the wisdom of anything Steiner said.
You wrote, “Tell me about your accusation against Rudolf Steiner and I tell you who you are, what kind of person you are. Wes [Was?] Geistes Kind du bist.”
I would be interested to hear what you would tell me, someone who questions the wisdom of some of the things that Steiner is supposed to have said, Was Geistes kind Ich bin. (Please note the use of the word ‘supposed’)
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Ottmar and Tom,
It is worth reviewing the post that got this all started, ref.
Without it, this discussion would not be taking place. How mammon originated in the particular instance of a certain rich man living near Jerusalem is described in chapter 16 of the Gospel of Luke. His unrighteous steward was also very clever in the manner whereby he regained the acceptance of his master, who began to wear purple robes.
my words were not addressed to anyone specific, but were meant in general (I hope I made myself understood). It is up to you and everybody else whether you refer this to yourself, whether you accept or reject it for yourself or even in general.
I personally try to escape any personal fights with words although I admit that this is a necessity in many cases; say defend RS on the WC-list. But I dont see myself in this place.
Many years ago I heard a somewhat famous Dutch anthro, Jelle von der Meulen, in Stuttgart. His lecture was announced „Marx durfte irren, Steiner auch?“, about It is accepted that Karl Marx made errors/mistakes; do we accept this with Rudolf Steiner, too? Then, it was in the 80s I think, this sounded very bold, very revolutionary; only a young Dutchman could give a lecture under such title. Well, I was very disappointed: Of course Steiner could be wrong, he himself had said so, we should take nothing for granted etc. But Jelle van der Meulen did not give 1 example where he thought Steiner was wrong.
I personally do not feel competent to question any of Steiner’s occult research results. There are certain results which are more important for me than others, of course. But I simply do not feel competent to question any points on say incarnations, on the constitution of man etc.
But it is well known that RS made reference to things that were in the newspaper and which later turned out to be wrong.
I personally feel competent to reject or correct Rudolf Steiner on one minor detail: He spoke of Johann Valentin Andreae in a disparaging way. A lot of research has been done http://www.ritmanlibrary.com/ since Steiner s time on JVA and his circle in Tubingen. JVA was a polymath indeed, he spoke many languages (I think beside Latin and Greek, Hebrew?, French, Italian, Spanish, English), he wrote plays, novels, and he even worked in the field of mathematics and was very aware of the latest findings in this field. And JVA had travelled extensively in Europe. So he certainly was not a mediocre figure. JVA was a member of the Tubingen Circle, a group of 12 people who received the inspiration for the Rosicrucian texts and JVA was not the the spiritus rex, that was Tobias Hess, but he was the mouthpiece because he had the ability to turn the inspiration into the stories, Fama, Confession and Chymical Wedding. So on this particular topic I feel competent to „correct“ or contradict if you like Steiner.
My feeling is that if RS was wrong on certain things it is most likely where he speaks negatively about a person/circumstances. But as I said I do not feel competent to judge most things he mentions, but I can confirm a number of facts from my own experience and research.
Tonight (Dec31) we are (according to RS) lifted out of or above the blood links to our people and soil, on this night we are just a human. (How could I deny this, I could only say: Yes, I can feel that, too or no, that totally escapes me.)
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“Tonight (Dec31) we are (according to RS) lifted out of or above the blood links to our people and soil, on this night we are just a human. (How could I deny this, I could only say: Yes, I can feel that, too or no, that totally escapes me.)”
I just spent the last three hours engaging in an intense meditation to the above. It brought forth huge revelations on a number of levels. With regard to Johann Valentin Andreae, it certainly appears that Rudolf Steiner gave a definite slight to this man, and why is the question. You know, Ottmar, I admit never seeing such a display of derision inflicted on another human being as Steiner shows here in the these two lectures, which touch on JVA.
Could it be that JVA failed to do what was anticipated and expected of him? You know, in contrast, that Jacob Bohme gave everything in the last six years of his life.
Steve, glad to hear that you had a „successful“ meditation on that night.
RS somewhere said that if God/nature didnt give us the gift/present of these special times, nights (he referred to the night from Dec 24 to 25) we would lose the living, progressing Christianity and mankind would be left behind with only the death on the cross, without resurrection.
I looked up the lectures ,you mentioned, again and yes indeed, that „oily pastor“ is inappropriate, no matter whether RSs words were the result of occult research or exoteric, book-research. Yes, may be JVA should have played a role in the „general reformation of the world“, for a „rosicrucian“ input in the world; he cerainly had a leadership karma, as his biography shows. But this never happened, it was aborted through the beginning of the 30-year-war in 1618.
The question remains why RS used these words: Did he have „a bad day“? Did he slip into a more primitive wording that was used at the time? And why on this particular occasion? My impression is that RS was not always the great hierophant but also worked on an „ordinary level“, that his occult research results were (always?) correct but that he also had his „blind spots“, e.g. that he was not outright wrong but sometimes one-sided. Just as he said that HPB in the Kamaloka was happy when he „corrected“ her on earth, RS will be happy if we put some facts straight (what I here try to do in respect to JVA).
RS wrote a few chapters/comments on the Chymical Wedding and I must say, he only scratched at the surface of it; there is much much more to it. The Chymical Wedding is a mystery text which, like the gospels, it awaits lots and lots of studies, meditations; in fact it is THE mystery text of present and future Rosicrucian initiation. I ask myself why RS and later anthros havent put more emphasis on this text.
There are only a few esoteric commentaries on the Chymical Wedding, as far as I know. A Dutch friend of mine wrote about a specific aspect of the Chymical Wedding, that is about the numbers, and the relationship and reunification of the two halves (male+female) of the human race. See http://www.muninnederlander.nl/Publicaties-AlchemischeBruiloftOntcijferd.php
and table of contents and a summary here (perhaps a little ahrimanic tool can translate it;-))
In 1614, when the Fama Fraternitatis was printed, another work of JVA came out, the Collectanea mathematica. There you find among others Pascal s Triangle, 40 years before Pascal published it. Of course JVA hadnt discovered this triangle, but it shows that he was up to date in maths and other sciences and that he could also understand the relationship of certain esoteric secrets and the deeper meaning of numbers.
And a last retrieval of JVAs honour: In a very late letter of his to the Duke of Braunschweig? or Kassel? he said: I have always remained faithful or loyal to „the smell of the Rose“.
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It seems that RS is offended by JVA’s later characterization of the Rosicrucian manifestos as a “ludibrium”, or lampoon, and even calling them fake documents. Yet, careful investigation indicates that the young Valentin Andreae was selected as an initiate to have these works ‘inspired’ into him by a spiritual being. So, at 17 he begins to receive the “Chymical Wedding”, followed by the “Confessio”, and “Fama_Fraternitatis”. All of these were a progressive inspiration breathed into his ontology [being], and then after 12 years, he wrote them out in the reverse order, from 1614 to 1618. This was to prepare for their distribution as doctrinal tracts designed to provide a resolving force to the Catholic effort to crush the Protestant reformation.
What was lacking was a strong figure, like Alexander the Great, to spread this Rosicrucian wisdom. Alexander, having been taught by Aristotle, went out to spread the so-called “aristotelian knowledge of nature” to the four directions of his conquering kingdom. It is not without significance that Aristotle entered Plato’s Academy at the age of 17, and that a kind of “spiritual Aristotle” entered Johannes Valentinus Andreae at the age of 17, in 1603.
Nor is it insignificant that the veritable Birth of the Consciousness Soul era coincides with the crowning of James I, King of England, in 1603. Several important personalities had a spiritual inspirer behind them for reasons related to the happenings, already laid out by the Spiritual Powers for the imminent future. JVA was one of these.
Yet, he lacked the mettle of an Alexander. This is the part that he failed to sufficiently develop. Thus, the criticism of Steiner concerns the fact that he fell short of the destiny meant for him at a critical moment in time, and even disavowed its authenticity in later life.
thank you for sharing this comment, this „vision“ with us. Is this a result from your year s end meditation? What you write is quite conclusive and binds some lose ends together. I will think about it.
My personal approach is different, however. First I try to study the material on the subject, these are in the first place JVAs autobiographic texts and the valuable research that has been done mainly by Carlos Gilly. We cannot fall back behind this or leave out what he has found out about the history of the 3 main rosicrucian manifestoes.
http://www.ritmanlibrary.com/books/hermes/carlos-gilly/cimelia-rhodostaurotica-die-rosenkreuzer-im-spiegel-der-zwischen-1610-und-1660-entstandenen-handschriften-und-drucke/ Exhibition catalogue in German focussing on the earliest reception of the Rosicrucian Manifestoes, not only in the German-language areas but also in other European countries. The first 83 entries provide an annotated account of the predecessors, origins and earliest reception of the Manifestoes; the following 291 entries provide titles and title-pages without commentary and illustrate the enormous range of material produced in reaction to the published Manifestoes.
See also Gilly s on Adam Haslmayr, the first rosicrucian martyr, About this Book: Study documenting the life and thought of a man whose very existence was long doubted. Haslmayr’s name and praise of the Bortherhood is mentioned on the title-page of the first edition of the first Rosicrucian Manifesto Fama Fraternitatis of 1614, but the enthusiastic response of Haslmayr himself, a Paracelsian and a devoted advocate of the Rosicrucian Brotherhood, was unknown and considered a fiction: it is here presented in facsimile. Gilly’s study sheds not only light on Haslmayr himself, but also on the earliest circle connected with the Manifestoes outside Tübingen. And
Rosenkreuz als europäisches Phänomen im 17. Jahrhundert, About this Book: The Rosicrucian Movement is one of the most widely-discussed phenomena of the 17th century. In fact, ever since the publication of the Rosicrucian Manifestoes Fama and Confessio Fraternitatis 1614/1615, triggered an intense and never-ending debate not only in Germany, but also in other European countries, the Rosicrucian Movement has been a focus of study and inquiry. The questions about the Rosicrucians most frequently asked at the time (‘are they amongst us, who are they, where are they from and what do they want?’) can now be answered with greater precision than thirty years ago, when Frances A. Yates published her famous The Rosicrucian Enlightenment. That there are still many and essential issues requiring explanation is witnessed by the well-argued contributions (mainly in German; two in French, four in English) published in this volume, which contain the proceedings of a symposium held by the BPH and the Herzog August Bibliothek in Wolfenbüttel from 23-25 November 1994.
Gilly found early manuscripts of the Chymical Wedding (and the other manifestoes) in archives and libraries throughout Europe, which is an exciting story in itself. The Fama Fraternitatis written in 1610 or before.
Unfortunately I dont have Gilly s books at hand at the moment.
I m still convinced that the inspiration for the rosicrucian idea/texts took place in a group, in the Tubingen circle and that JVA worked out these inspirations into texts. And you are right: an inspiration is not an impersonal matter, a spiritual being is behind an inspiration and in this case it is most likely that the inspiration came from CRC directly, no one else could give mantrams like EDN…, nor was anyone else so closely connected to CRC that he could give such a detailed inspiration. But then inspirations are a matter of seconds and then the incarnated individual has to „work out“ the inspiration, „translate“ it, give earthly words, names, pictures, allegories etc. to it. The „author“ then often has to write very speedily, in order not to lose the flow.
JVA always referred to Tobias Hess as his spiritual teacher. We know that the group met, they had a library of forbidden books. The protestant censorship was as strict as the catholic one, Valentin Weigel, Paracelsus and others were „forbidden“. It was in this group of educated, free thinking people, that the inspiration could take place. And we can take it for granted that the Tubingen circle were the first to „talk“ about the Chymical Wedding etc.
The fact that JVA distanced himself from the manifestoes was often discussed. As head of the protestant church in Wurttemberg after the 30-year-war it seems there was no way out of it. We cant imagine what the situation was then in Wurttemberg: 30% in some parts more than ½ of the population had been killed, no houses, no cattle, no teachers/priests left and JVA was responsible for the inner peace and wellfare of the people. JVA at that time introduced the first compulsory school attendence in the world. I want to say that he certainly had „other problems“ than the manifestoes and the 100% failure of the rosicrucian attempts before that war. And the least thing he wanted/needed were accustations from and fights with the orthodox protestant clergy and theologians that were left in the country.
That he hadnt abandoned the esoteric side shows his part in the cabbalistic altar that is now in Bad Teinach. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antonia_of_W%C3%BCrttemberg https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kabbalistische_Lehrtafel
Here you have a depiction of the 10 sephirot in that „christian cabbalistic“ altar: http://pamela2051.tripod.com/kabbalism.htm
It will be interesting to see how all these points will melt into one great picture.
„Nor is it insignificant that the veritable Birth of the Consciousness Soul era coincides with the crowning of James I, King of England, in 1603.“ 1413 birth and 1603 veritable birth of the Consciousness Soul Era? Can you explain this a bit further, please.
Please understand that on no account do I dismiss the work of JVA. It was prepared accordingly, for the war effort as a body of influence that could have stood in the middle between the Catholics and the Protestants. War undermines every good thing, and the Thirty Years War was especially brutal, and seeking to kill the spirit on earth.
Steiner was only detrimental to JVA in this one lecture, ref. GA232, lecture 9, 9 December 1923. Why here? His derogatory words come at the end of the third lecture on the Mysteries of Hibernia, as an interjection of sorts. So, I meditate on that in terms of “thinking into it”. This is when certain connecting threads are given and woven into the tapestry that is Anthroposophical Spiritual Science.
What is Rudolf Steiner doing in these lectures? He promises to say more about certain historical personalities at the CC of 1923, in the public lecture course, GA233. So, what do we find out there? The roots of Aristotle and Alexander. The Hibernian Mystery cultus located in the Burgenland that Gilgamesh of Uruk finds in a long westward trek to present-day Austria. This all goes back to around 2700 BC, and the Epic of Gilgamesh is a memorial to the mystery wisdom contained in this school; a last remains of the great Atlantean oracles. The Hierophant priest was Zarathustra under a slightly different name. We know the course of Zarathustra leads to the 42 generations of Abraham, who is born 700 years after Gilgmesh in Ur of Chaldea. Abraham is the result of the “slaying of the divinie bull in heaven”. In other words, not Brahman, but A-Braham.
This is a kind of insight into my working process that attempts to locate the spiritual inspirer behind Johann Valentin Andreae. Certainly, it is related to CRC, but who stands behind CRC. Now, we have to research the birth of CRC, the significance of the College of Twelve, Aquinas as the 12th, who redeems Aristotle for the fifth epoch. First birth was short, nursed by the “Twelve”. Second birth is over 100 years long, and where the origin of the manifestos arise in actual experiences. CRC goes to the East, anno 1459, in order to retrieve the great works of Krishna, who initiated the various Arjunas of world strife, and begins to transform them for the Occident as Rosicrucianism. Third birth is the semi-external manifestation as Count Saint Germain of the 18th century, seen here and there over the course of eight decades. Was he real? Was he a phantom? Ref. GA130.
Then, we come to the interesting fact that Rudolf Steiner’s birth occurred 77 years after the death of St. Germain. Everything indicates that he is to fulfill the misison of Christian Rosenkreutz in the 20th century. This is what is important. The living Spirit of the Rosicrucians is here. Who Are The Rosicrucians is very informative. Not surprisingly, Michael is our leader with Christ; Michael-Christ, both inwardly perceived in the individual human spirit.
Who is entitled to criticize Rudolf Steiner?
In our democratic times every „king of stupidity“ is entitled to vote or to be elected. So everybody is entitled to criticize RS, or who would or could forbid it?
But then there are questions to be answered. What do you make of a 10-year-old who says that Einstein s theory of relativity is nonsense? Dont you need a certain qualification to judge or criticize a subject or person?
There are countless books on Martin Luther lately, due to 500 years reformation. There are highly educated people who write biographies on Martin Luther, but is a university title alone enough to qualify for such a task. There are sociologists, historians and cultural scientists who write on Martin Luther. But I would claim that if they dont have a thorough knowledge of theology they will never understand what really moved Martin Luther.
1. The same with anthroposophy and Rudolf Steiner. Unless you have thoroughly s t u d i e d both, you most likely go completely off the subject. Everybody feels entitled to comment or criticize RS and his work, due to our education at school that encourages „having your own opinion without prior study“ and our „freedom of speech“.
On blogs like this one and others you find elementary school level and university level. A 140 sign tweet can be of greater importance, greater resonance than a well considered longer text. So for me first and foremost: you need to qualify through studies.
2. Time and again you hear that anthroposophists are not qualified to judge anthroposophy because they are biased. That s an insult in the first place to claim anthroposophists are intellectually incapable to think about the subject without their emotions interfering in their considerations. But if you maintain this idea you should be consequent: Only a Russian or Chinese historian is able to write an unbiased study on the American democracy and electoral system. Only a muslim from Ghom or from the Ahzar university in Kairo is able to write an unbiased book on Christianity.
What you need to judge something is a pure, c l e a r t h i n k i n g. And dont take this for granted, although the intellectual capacitiy is better today than 100 or more years ago.
3. And yes, you need a b a s i c p o s i t i v e a t t i t u d e to the theme of your studies. I dont mean a blind love, but a basic positive attitude say to the American democratic system, to Christianity. If you only want to show the superiority of Communist rule over democracy or the only right religion over Christianity, you are doomed to fail. If you are lead by hate or the will to destroy you will certainly go off completely the subject of your study. Take Staudenmaier: He rejoices when he hears of a neo-nazi teacher at a Waldorf School in Germany and then tries to fabricate this against waldorf, anthroposophy and RS in general. He ignores the 1000s of dedicated teachers who work for peace among ethnic groups, for peace between Arabs and Israelis, in the slums of Sao Paulo and Nairobi. This shows his cognitive interest (?) (Erkenntnisinteresse, a term used by Jurgen Habermas), use information and clarification as a pretext for hate and fight against anthroposophy and autonomous spirituality.
I think these 3 prerequisits are necessary if you want to criticize anthroposophy or any other subject or object. (I do not claim that any of my ideas is new. I just wanted to summarize, to get to the heart of it. And perhaps there are other prerequisits which I havent thought of.)
This is just to say hello, Ottmar, and long time no see or hear or read. Also congrats for the above, which hits the proverbial nail on the head,
Certainly it does, Frank. No see or hear or speak from Ottmar is worth a few words. He writes with a kind of fire and enthusiasm about a domain that he had largely left out, so let’s give him the accolade; right up your line. Consider making it an entry in your next issue of SCR, in which the critics were told what, and then were destroyed.
Steiner Press is coming out with the First Class lectures here:
Remember when Nick Thomas chastised you for doing it beforehand? I guess it is all what needs to become public property, come what may in today’s age. What would Steiner think about what needs to be made public today?
Likely how the public utility mixes with the cesspool.
Thank you, Frank. I m glad that you didnt keep an ill feeling because of my rejection on reform of capitalism vs. threefolding. The least thing I want to achieve with my contributions/comments is raising emotions, but rather add a piece of information or give a result of my decades long study on a subject. And I would be happy if I could somehow bridge the language-gap between the German and English speaking anthro world.
Yes, I occasionally wrote on your list which you closed down. I cant remember why you shut it down. Anyway, wouldnt it be a good idea to make a „Best of“ of the many contributions, say the 100 most interesting, valuable, comprehensive entries on a dozend themes/headlines? So many good things disappear in the internet nirvana (and are kept only in a limitless archive in the Rockies).
It was a little surprise for me to see that the Steiner Press America doesnt print the the version of the Steiner Press, Dornach but rather the Thomas Meyer release. But that is a small side topic for a small insider group of people.
Ottmar wrote to Frank Smith:
“Yes, I occasionally wrote on your list which you closed down. I cant remember why you shut it down.”
He shut it down because we were contributing on a daily basis, while he was stewing in his pot. Then, when he said he was considering deleting the forum because he didn’t have the time for it, we begged for him to keep it. He said: “Okay, but Steve Hale gets to write one comment only per day”.
I immediately unsubbed from his list, and a month later he did indeed delete it. I think it was called, Steiner_12, as an homage to Tom Mellett, who he allowed to write unhindered.
Sound about right, Frank?
Why did I close down Steiner12? I didn’t want to ban anyone, so I tried to make them leave on their own – like restricting you to 1 post per day, Steve. Something I knew you’re incapable of. But even after you left, it was full of anthropospohical fanatical lunatic-fringe conspiracy theorists; it was like a batcave full of them. Seeing that it was hopeless, I nuked the whole list.
P.S. In my previous post- “Ego: nonsense” should be; “Ergo: nonsense.
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No, I think these 3 prerequisites are adequate. But, what needs to take place next is the requisite activist action to take on these critics of anthroposophy, Steiner, and Waldorf education. Are you experiencing an upheaval of sorts, possibly the Egoisten blog? The reason I ask is because the Waldorf-Critics list is dead [Yea]. That took some effort, but we won. Staudenmaier has been reduced to referring to the German site of Michael Eggert, who apparently has profound insights as a truly cosmopolitan anthroposophist.
Show me that, and I’ll stick a ‘smiley face’ right now 🙂
I occasionally look at the egoisten blog. The degree of arrogance and cynicism is unsurpassed, the name of the blog seems to be the programme. I prefer humble service to the truth, the facts and not a competition of who uses the more insulting words. I wrote to Eggert twice in 10 years or so, criticizing the language he used and he had the greatness to admit that he was wrong in doing so.
It is of no use to write about facts there, because they write on the basis of their little ego, not on the basis of love to the facts, on a balanced view of reality. There might be some exceptions, e.g. Ton Majoor, who is balanced in his opinion and tries to lift the level of the discussions there.
Eggert tries to present himself as an „enlightened“ (aufgeklärt) anthropopper, who rejects all the racism and nationalism and blindness and errors of Rudolf Steiner, and so he serves as a platform or mouthpiece for Staudenmaier et company.
Steve, what do mean with „the WC list is dead“? Did Staudi retire from being the guru of the WC sitters? Does Staudi think he might lose academic reputation by writing on this list?
I must admit that I dont know a single interesting anthro list in German. I was told that the facebook activities are even more deplorable.
Ottmar, please allow these three comments from you:
“Ton Majoor, who is balanced in his opinion and tries to lift the level of the discussions there.”
“Eggert tries to present himself as an „enlightened“ (aufgeklärt) anthropopper, who rejects all the racism and nationalism and blindness and errors of Rudolf Steiner, and so he serves as a platform or mouthpiece for Staudenmaier et company.”
“Steve, what do mean with „the WC list is dead“? Did Staudi retire from being the guru of the WC sitters? Does Staudi think he might lose academic reputation by writing on this list?”
Ton is largely the reason that I write here on Jeremy’s blog. He encourages discussion, and is bilingual, German/English. He is also very deep in the content-knowledge of anthroposophy. To have him appear here was unexpected, but wonderful. He helps certify my contributions amongst those that might consider this blog very boring, and way too intellectual. Thanks, Ton.
I suspect that Michael Eggert is exactly as you depict him. Supposedly, he used to work for Info3, and which puts him in the camp of Jens Heisterkamp, the Dane who felt it necessary to sponsor the dissection of the Steiner racist comments for the common good. Eggert thinks himself to be a cosmo liberalist, who accepts all with the “live and let live attitude”. Well, who objects to that? Yet, he pins on Steiner way more than is necessary, or even truthful.
I doubt that he has even studied a lick of the Steiner work. Well, maybe, in the Staudenmaier mold of calling it all “nonsense”.
WC is dead because it is. Their lights have gone out, and Elvis has left the building. If you don’t believe it, just go look. It took time and great patience and perseverance, but it happened.
Eggert never worked for Heisterkamp; Eggert lives in Düsseldorf, Heisterkamp in Frankfurt and I never saw anything of Eggert in Heisterkamp s Info3 Magazine. Heisterkamp is more educated than Eggert. Info3 once was an anthro magazine, today it is sort of new age-wellness-green-meditation etc. magazine with a sideview on anthroposophy.
Ottmar, in my opinion you have to give Michael and Jeremy the credits for what Steiner called ‘a treatment of the positive’. Despite disturbing trolls, they tolerantly admit critical thoughts, which can be a healing process (ubi pus evacua) or a biodynamic preparation. ‘Egoisten’ seems to refer to Steiner’s 1899 article ‘Individualism in Philosophy’
“I do not mean to conceal the contradictions in the history of philosophy, but I intend to show what remains valid in spite of the contradictions. That Hegel and Haeckel are treated in this book to reveal what is positive and not negative in both of them can, in my opinion, be criticized as erroneous only by somebody who is incapable of seeing how fruitful such a treatment of the positive is.” GA018_pref1923
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Yes, a lot of pus is coming out in Die Egoisten. But I d like to shout out: watch out, pus is sploshed about; dont get infected by it.
(You caught me by my weak side, I hated Latin and got bad marks in it. And interesting for me: In the Netherlands different Latin quotes are pupular than in Germany. I often realized this when talking to Dutch friends.)
I mean e.g. you can like or dislike Judith von Halle (and there are always 2 sides to everything) but the way some folks speak about her is just indecent, ill-mannered.
But then I agree, let us always try to be positive, see the good side of things and help and promote the positive forces.
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Ottmar, I swear that I remember reading that Eggert was once on the staff of Info3. I believe it can be verified; at least, I know I remember hearing it. Heisterkamp, who is Dutch, not Danish [sorry for that], is notorious for his encouraging the analysis of Steiner racist remarks. Thus, he is a veritable icon of the post-modern movement of a true progressive anthroposophy, which acknowledges Steiner’s racism as not meeting present-day standards.
Yet, if people really knew Steiner’s evolutionary race-formation doctrine, which was very carefully drawn out, maybe they would have a different view than the present so-called “social construct model”, which says that any idea of race- differentiation is obsolete. Well, in fact, it is, but that is due to cultural amalgamation of the various races into an homogeneous whole over time. Steiner called it the evolutionary path from endogamy to exogamy of the blood itself. This is the key to us as Universal Human today. We are One.
The other side of this cultural amalgamation would be evolutionary monogenism, which is commonly left out of Steiner’s human evolution account:
“Mankind proceeded from a unity, but Earth evolution up to the present has led to differentiation. etc.” (GA013_c04-07)
In this sense, the human phantom body (the saved form of the physical human body) could be identified with the multiplied ‘copies of the ego’ (GA0109/19090329 and 19090531), and in a wider sense with the ‘ego body’ or ‘ego organisation’.
Jens Heisterkamp is ‘Deutsch’ (Duisburg), Jelle van der Meulen is Dutch but lives in Deutschland.
Rudolf Steiner books
When we study anthroposophy and the texts, lectures of Rudolf Steiner, we might forget that there are different categories of texts, we could also say there is a certain hierarchy in the texts.
-The first category are the written books and articles, which were meant for the public in general. These are the foremost texts, especially if you are a critic of anthroposophy or Steiner. But you will find little criticism or comments on these books. -The next category are the public lectures, meant for those who have not studied anthroposophy, for those who come into contact with anthroposophy for the first time, for the beginners so to speak. -Thirdly there are the lecutres for members of the Anthr. Soc., for those who feel connected with anthropsophy, for those who have a positive connection to it. These lectures were not meant for the public, they were (in the beginning) not meant to be written down, not even spread among the members. Later, when the lectures were accessible to the general public, a preface, a sort of spiritual protectional formula was printed in every single book, in every single case. We all know this preface, foreword. In fact it says something that is an unspoken precondition in every scientific book: You have to have the qualification to read and especially judge the content. -And a last category are lectures which were for members only a n d who also had the qualification of a certain metier, say for doctors, priest, teachers only. -A separate category are the words which were for particular individuals.
(This isnt new either, I only wanted to reassure us anthropoppers when there are kindergarden style critics or academic hypocrites.)
And then there is the plagiarist Max Heindel
Southern California offers exceptional opportunities for spiritual growth, because of the ether atmosphere being denser than in any other part of the world and Mount Ecclesia, as the Rosicrucian Fellowship Headquarters are called, is particularly favored in this respect.
The Fifth Gospel
A man from America who spent weeks and months getting to know our teachings, transcribed and carried them off in a watered-down form to America, where he has given out a plagiarised “Rosicrucian Theosophy.” True, he says he learnt a good deal from us over here but that he was afterwards summoned to the Masters and learnt more from them. He keeps silence, however, about the source of the deeper information contained in the then unpublished lecture-courses. When something like this happens in America, one may of course emulate the aged Hillel and be lenient; nor need one stop being lenient when these things make their way across to Europe. In a quarter from which the most violent attacks were launched, a translation was made of what these circles in America had taken from us and it was said in an introduction to this translation: True, a Rosicrucian conception of the world is making its appearance in Europe too, but in a bigoted, Jesuitical form; this kind of thought can really only thrive in the pure air of California. Well … here I will pause! Such are the methods of our opponents. We may regard these things with leniency and even with compassion — but we should not shut our eyes to them. When things like this happen it behoves even those who for years have been remarkably forbearing with people who acted so unscrupulously, to be wary. Perhaps one day everyone will have their eyes opened. If the service of truth did not demand it, I should much prefer not to speak about these matters, but they must be faced fairly and squarely.
Occult Movement: Lecture Five
But he who starts from truth itself has, to begin with, all humanity against him. Truth has to conquer its domain with complete disinterestedness. That is why, at bottom, nothing is more hated than the truth, the unvarnished truth. And so there may be many adherents here and there who actually cherish hatred deep down within them. No wonder that this hatred sometimes cuts through the force that builds a wall against it — cuts through this force because the hatred has been accumulating for so long. Such hatred is far more widespread than is imagined and it is a factor that must be reckoned with. Wherever truth is trying to assert itself endeavours are made to transform and re-cast it in such a way that it can somehow serve the opposing Powers. And various endeavours cropping up among us at the present time must be regarded as an effort to distort truth as presented here and apply it in a different sense. The craftiest way of doing this is to declare: the teaching itself is good, the teacher—worthless. The teaching is stolen from the teacher and efforts are made to apply it to some other aims. — What Lucifer and Ahriman would love to do is to be able to take the wisdom of the Gods lock, stock and barrel and transfer it to the Eighth Sphere.
[PDF]Freemasonry and Catholicism – Rosicrucian – The Rosicrucian …
FREEMASONRY AND. CATHOLICISM. BY. MAX HEINDEL. Eleventh Edition. An Exposition of the Cosmic Facts Underlying. These Two Great Institutions As …
Caryn recently cited from GA254, lecture II, 10-11-1915:
“A certain highly-respected Occult Brotherhood suggested to me that I should participate in the spreading of a kind of occultism calling itself ‘Rosicrucian’, but I left the proposal unanswered, although it came from a much-respected Occult Movement. ”
This remark is most interesting. It has the effect of conveying something in opposition to the Rosicrucian movement, and yet, RS gave 28 lectures on the Theosophy of the Rosicrucian in 1907, ref. GA 99, GA 100.
Does anyone have an idea of what occult movement approached Steiner? It likely has to be a European group, maybe the latter-day Tubingen 12, still advocating Johann Valentin Andreae, Tobias Hess, and the other scholars of the history of the so-called “manifestos.” We know that Max Heindel [Carl Louis von Grasshoff], followed Steiner in listening and noting the aforesaid lectures, ref.
and then formed the Rosicrucian Fellowship in Oceanside, California. In similar fashion, Harvey Spencer Lewis also spent time in Europe in 1909, and then came back in order to form the AMORC [Ancient Mystical Order of Rosae Crucis], in Seattle, Washington, in 1915.
Steiner would certainly not have aligned with these, but he certainly knew of the mission of Christian Rosenkreutz for the 20th century. He even expressly stated it in the second biographical sketch to Eduard Schure in September 1907.
Ottmar has a copy of it , and if anyone would like to receive it, please do ask, because it is extremely important.
The Tubingen circle was not really known is Steiner s lifetime.
We do not know who addressed RS to become a member, co-worker, so we have to guess. I think it must have been a group from the UK, because there was not much of this kind of activity in Germany before WWI. So what about -Stella Matutina (that is the group Edith Maryon was a member of, I think) and -SRIA or perhaps -an occult freemasonry group around John Yarker?
Yes, Steiner devotes a whole chapter to the Yarker invitation to lead OTO in 1906. Eventually, this would go to Crowley in 1912.
This article on Stella Matutina [Morning Star] refers to Steiner as actually taking up the OTO, according to a fellow named Robert Felkin. Of course, this is not true.
But, where does Edith Maryon come in on this? She sculpted for RS on the Representative of Man, c. 1917, and then died in 1924, after having been made the first leader of the Arts Section of the School of Spiritual Science. Recent reports indicate that she has reincarnated quite early as Judith von Halle, and taking up her work quite seamlessly from before.
Yes, this occasionally pops up, that RS was a member of the OTO. Some years ago, there was a huge study with hundreds of pages of text and documents on this question on the internet. Unfortunately this site has disappeared, this is what is left of it: http://www.parareligion.ch/steiner_.htm which is interesting as well.
It seems that Edith Maryon was a member of Stella Matutina and knew Felkin very well. On Die Egoisten this was a topic back in 2013 and some of it is in English, too.
and especially this:
unfortunately in German only and I cannot translate or summarize it just now; perhaps almighty god google translator can help for a start.
Steve Hale wrote: “Recent reports indicate that she (Miss Maryon) has reincarnated quite early as Judith von Halle, and taking up her work quite seamlessly from before.”
Enemies of von Halle in Germany have said that JvH claims to be the reincarnation of Maryon. JvH denied it. Ego: nonsense.
It’s all good, Ottmar. Maybe one day we’ll all start treating each other nice.
I suspect that “Die Egoisten” is a lot like Jeremy’s “Anthropopper”. In short, who needs to fight on this stuff? We have met the enemy, and he is Us. Where does that come from?
What if it could be shown that Peter Selg is the reincarnation of Ita Wegman? Would it not also indicate a rather seamless transition in order to support Steiner’s promise of immediate reincarnation of his elect at the end of the 20th century?
“Staudenmaier (2014) almost completely omitted the dynamics (human migration and colonization) in the anthroposophical evolution model (see Ch.1 of his book). Leaving out a common origin of humankind, he presented Steiner’s stereotype model as a progressive stage model of human development (p.42-3).”
Of course he did. How do you think a a book titled: Between Nazism and Occultism [with special thanks to anthroposophy] could have been written?
He never listened to one good argument of the Steiner evolutionary race-formation model, offered time and again. If we consider evolutionary monogenism, or original design model, it is not without importance to go back to Genesis, Chapter 1, v. 26; “Let Us make man in Our Image, according to Our Likeness, male and female”.
This proclamation is the original design model in the Mind of God. Then, if we go to chapter 2, Genesis, it starts to become more complex around verse 4. This when the Lord God first appears, and has to organize the manifestation of mankind through the ages.
According to Steiner, this equates with the latter part of the Lemurian epoch.
In Staudenmaier’s (and Zander’s) account Steiner’s Universal Human model remains an abstract polygenistic model.
Martins (2014): ‘Staudenmaier’s account of Steiner’s theory of race is too vague …’
Cf. Arvidsson (2014), http://lnu.diva-portal.org/smash/get/diva2:740584/FULLTEXT01.pdf